Enthusiasm for AI is outpacing adoption, study finds

Artificial intelligence and machine learning have become essential for organizations to stay competitive. But adoption is lagging, even among key decision-makers championing change.

That is the finding of a new survey by the RELX Group, a global provider of information and analytics. The company surveyed 1,000 U.S.-based senior executives across government, healthcare, insurance, legal, science/medical and banking in September, and the research found that 88 percent agree that AI and machine learning will help their organizations be more competitive.

While the value of the technologies is clear to executives, only 56 percent of organizations use machine learning or AI. In addition, only 18 percent of those surveyed plan to increase investment in these technologies.

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Data cables feed into a server inside a comms room at an office in London, U.K., on Friday, Oct. 16, 2015. A group of Russian hackers infiltrated the servers of Dow Jones & Co., owner of the Wall Street Journal and several other news publications, and stole information to trade on before it became public, according to four people familiar with the matter. Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

“Organizations [that] can successfully use emerging technologies such as AI and machine learning to provide their customers with better products and advanced analytics can emerge as the leaders of the future,” says Kumsal Bayazit, chairman of RELX Group’s Technology Forum.

“While awareness of these technologies and their benefits is higher than ever before, endorsement from key decision makers has not been enough to spark matching levels of adoption,” Bayazit says.

The study showed that AI and machine learning are making their mark, with 69 percent of those surveyed saying the technologies have had a positive impact on their industry.

Machine learning and AI are helping solve challenges by automating decision processes (cited by 40 percent); improving customer retention (36 percent); and detecting fraud, waste and abuse (33 percent).

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